Until The Next Tee’s Holiday 2020 Gift Guide

‘Tis the season. It’s December 1st, and there’s a ton of time to get some holidays gifts for yourself, or your loved ones that golf. In the way of gold, frankincense, and myrrh gifts need not be ultra expensive or inexpensive to make the golfer in your life happy. In my usual fashion I will list gifts at several price points.

I’m not affluent, so I understand that golfers and their families can have a tight budget. All of my gift suggestions are items that I’ve personally used and endorse based on my personal experiences. Never will I give my stamp of approval on anything that I’ve never tested, tried, and liked.

So, without further delay, here is Until The Next Tee’s 2020 Holiday Gift Guide.

Happy Holidays from Until The Next Tee!!

PitchFix AquaBrush – The cheapest gift in the guide comes to you from PitchFix. PitchFix is known for producing accessories like their MultiMarker Chip and multiple models of divot repair tools. I’ve started testing the AquaBrush very recently, and it has proven to be such a great addition to the golf bag. Nothing beats having clean grooves, especially, when it’s winter golf season. It’s compact design, inner water reservoir/spray nozzle, and durable bristles make this item a stocking stuffer that many a golfer would appreciate. $14.50 USD (Package of 2 replacement brushes $4.95 USD)

Compact, handy, and practical. The PitchFix AquaBrush

Zero Friction Golf Gloves – Golf gloves. As a golfer, can we really have too many of them? How about gloves in a variety of colours to match with our golfing wardrobe? If you’re tired of wearing the standard white or black glove, look no further than Zero Friction golf gloves. I have tested these gloves all season long as I wanted to be sure of their durability. Gloves from Zero Friction have proven to be very durable. Is there a golfer in your life that suffers from stiff hands due to arthritis? Well, the Ultra Feel glove is a solution. The Ultra Feel golf glove is a padded glove which reduces tension, hand fatigue, and eliminates vibration through the shaft. Are you feeling patriotic? Look at the “Americana” or the “O Canada” gloves respectively. I guarantee you that there’s a glove that the recipient will like. Worried about getting the wrong size? Let me put your mind at ease. These gloves are universal fit and will fit almost any hand. There are also youth sizes too. Prices start at $13.99 USD but there is special pricing at the moment at https://www.zerofriction.com/

From the Spectra Matte golf balls to a wide selection of Universal Fit golf gloves. Zero Friction has a gift for the golfer on your list.

TaylorMade Soft Response Golf Balls – I’ve tested several models of golf balls this year with varying price points. If you’re looking for a dozen new golf balls that will offer the golfer in your life a lot of “bang for the buck”, look at the TaylorMade Golf Soft Response. This is a golf ball that comes with a pretty friendly price tag. Any time that a golf ball comes in at less than $30 CAD per dozen is a good thing. Then factor in that it’s a durable, 3-piece design that performs very well in all facets of the game. Be sure to check out my review on that golf ball right here (https://untilthenexttee.blog/2020/11/02/review-taylormade-golf-soft-response-golf-balls/). Another added bonus is that these golf balls are available in white, high-visibility yellow and my personal favourite… matte red. $24.99/dozen.

The “sleeper” golf ball of 2020. The TaylorMade Golf Soft Response.

TRUE Linkswear ECO Knit Golf Shoes – These golf shoes are super lightweight and extremely breathable. What they lack in waterproofing, they make up for in design. The comfort is such, that you don’t even realize that they’re on your feet. TRUE Linkswear has been very innovative when it comes to golf shoe design, but, the ECO Knit are this to the “nth” degree. The ECO Knit golf shoes are made from the yarns of 100% post-consumer products. Instead of a plastic water bottle floating in a lake, that bottle could be processed to produce the yarn for the construction of the shoe. TRUE ECO Knit is first sustainable shoe. Not only would you be giving a golfer a gift, but you’d also be giving “Mother Nature” a gift too. $100 USD (Currently on sale for $65) https://truelinkswear.com/

“Fore the Planet” the TRUE Linkswear ECO Knit.

Tour Edge Golf Exotics EXS 220 – Receiving a golf club to replace an old one is always nice. It’s even better when you can get a quality, premium product without paying the premium price. This is exactly what Tour Edge Golf offers with the Exotics EXS 220 product range. These products were juggernaut, runaway medal winners in almost every category of the 2020 Teezy Awards. At the moment, Tour Edge Golf have the prices of these products marked down on their website. Prices range from $249.99 USD for the driver down to $159.99 USD for the hybrid. You can’t go wrong with the Exotics product range from Tour Edge Golf. https://shop.touredge.com/

The Exotics EXS 220 Fairway Wood.

Rapsodo Golf MLM – Rounding out my gift guide is this portable launch monitor from Rapsodo Golf. Say you had $499 USD available. Now you have a decision to make. Do I purchase a new driver in 2021? Or, do I purchase an item that is a serious investment to my game. An item that will help me improve and give me valuable information? Information like Clubhead Speed, Ball Speed, Smash Factor, Carry Distance, Total Distance, and Launch Angle to name a few. Games are available as well like “Closest to the Pin” to will sharpen you up during your practice sessions, while making them more interactive and fun. This launch monitor will do it. Are you worried that you could only use it outdoors and the cold, snowy winter has you hemmed in? Don’t fret, because the Mobile Launch Monitor from Rapsodo Golf has indoor and net capabilities too. Please note that, at the moment, the MLM is only available for iOS. Please check Rapsodo Golf’s website regarding specific specifications information. At the time of writing, the MLM is available for $399.99 USD https://rapsodo.com/product/mobile-launch-monitor/

Rapsodo Golf MLM

Until The Next Tee!!

#fightandgrind #seeuonthenexttee

Review – Tour Edge Exotics EXS 220 Fairway Wood

Testing products on an expansive driving range is one thing. On-course testing is a totally different animal altogether.

I have to offer many thanks to Jon Claffey (VP of Marketing for Tour Edge Golf) for giving me the opportunity to test and review the Exotics EXS 220 Fairway Wood for a long-term on-course testing and review.

I was really curious to see if this terrific stick would live up to the pressure of winning the Silver Teezy Award in the “Top Fairway Wood” category at the 2020 PGA Show Demo Day.

The EXS 220 proved to be a significant improvement over the EXS Fairway Wood, especially in the acoustics category. Technology talking points are plentiful in this fairway wood. Diamond Face VFT, SpeedTested shafts, SlipStream Sole Technology, Dual Carbon Tech and more all contribute to a fairway wood that could easily end up in the respective bags of many golfers.

Please see the full video review below.

While the EXS 220 Fairway Wood ended up being a really forgiving club with a ton of technology that offers plenty of performance for the golfer dollar. It was the sound of the EXS 220 Fairway Wood ended up being a focal point. Instead of explaining the sound, I figured that it would be best to have an audio clip instead.

Until The Next Tee!!

#seeuonthenexttee #fightandgrind

TAYLORMADE GOLF ANNOUNCES NEW LICENSING PARTNERSHIP WITH THE NBA

TP5/TP5X GOLF BALLS ARE NOW AVAILABLE WITH LOGOS FROM ALL 30 NBA TEAMS, INCLUDING THE REIGNING NBA CHAMPIONS, TORONTO RAPTORS.

Carlsbad, Calif. (August 18th, 2020) – TaylorMade Golf, an industry leader in innovation and performance, announces a new licensing deal with the National Basketball Association (NBA). Connected by a shared passion for sport and competition, the NBA | TaylorMade collaboration tips off with the introduction of TP5/TP5x golf balls featuring logos from all 30 teams, including alternate logos for many franchises.

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The NBA showcases some of the world’s best athletes and reaches a wide demographic of sports fans across the globe. We couldn’t be more excited about this collaboration and the opportunity to share an audience with a worldwide leader in professional sports.

David Abeles, CEO, TaylorMade Golf

The new golf-ball collection will allow NBA fans to take advantage of TP5/TP5x technology and performance – featuring a new material called HFM that delivers higher ball speed through a greater rebound effect. In addition to the 5-layer construction, a cast urethane cover makes TP5/TP5x the most complete Tour ball in golf.

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In the future, TaylorMade is planning to launch additional NBA-branded products that will further allow basketball fans to take their favorite teams from the hardwood to the golf course.

 

Pricing & Availability

 

NBA TP5/TP5x golf balls are available exclusively on TaylorMadeGolf.ca and have an MSRP of $59.99 CAD per dozen.

Learn more at TaylorMadeGolf.ca.

 

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“First Impressions” Review – Honma Golf TR 20 440/460 Driver

The opportunity to swing Honma Golf products was a bit of a surprise for me. In the month leading up to the PGA Show this past January, I was actively scouring the list of participants. One manufacturer that I never saw on the list was Honma Golf. As I arrived for Demo Day at Orange County National Golf Resort and Lodge, I was taken back when I saw their booth on the Demo Day range.

Earlier in the day, any time that I passed their booth, I couldn’t help but notice that their booth was “hopping”. A sign of things to come? Perhaps. As it turns out, Honma Golf would be the very last manufacturer that I would make swings with, closing out my 2020 Demo Day experience. A day that was full of surprises, cold temperatures (for Florida), and blowing winds.

Here is my “First Impressions” Review of the Honma Golf TR20 440 driver.

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Photo Credit: Honma Golf

The Set-Up

Before I get too far ahead of myself, I feel that it’s important to point out that there are two head models of the Honma TR20 driver. There is the smaller footprint, more compact 440 cc head and then there is the 460cc head. Earlier this year, while Justin Rose played Honma he elected to play the 460cc head. While I did have good results on Demo Day with the 460 cc option, I had better results with the 440 cc version. Much of that derived from being more comfortable with the smaller footprint.

Here are some details about the technology packed into Honma TR20 drivers.

 

TiCarbon+Fast Frame Technology – An ultra-light weight frame and body composed from carbon fibre and a high CIR Titanium allows for more energy to be transferred from the swing to the golf ball.

ET40 Carbon Crown – Used in the crown and sole, this lightweight carbon allowed designers to optimize the weight in the TR20. Also allowing golfers to optimize their speed.

Vertical Groove – Inside the head is a vertical groove. This vertical groove and variable face thickness increses ball speed across the surface area of the head.

Adjustable Weighting – Three adjustable weights allow golfers and fitters to dial in their preferred flight. The weights allow for the fine-tuning of draw bias, spin, and stability (forgiveness).

Non- Rotating Hosel – This hosel design keeps the shaft spine aligned perfectly throughout all loft and lie settings.

The Honma Golf TR20 440 is available in three standard lofts (8.5, 9.5, and 10.5º respectively). The stock shaft featured is the Vizard shaft, which is a premium high-performance shaft which is produced in Sakata, Japan. The Vizard shaft comes in weights of 50, 60 and 70-grams.

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The Transition 

Seeing that I’ve already talked about the conditions and pointed out the fact that Honma Golf closed out my 2020 Demo Day I think it’s best just to delve right in here. Let’s talk about what matters.

Aesthetically speaking, I think that the Honma Golf TR20 440 was the best looking driver at the 2020 PGA Show scoring a perfect 10/10 in Teezy Awards scoring. The crown is clean (the cleanest on the range) and is totally void of an alignment aid. A look preferred by discerning golfers. The head shape alone, is even more appealing as it features a traditional shape, Takumi-shaped, this head represents 60 years of craftsmanship. And it shows! Flipping the club over, the sole has a little bit of a modern look as the silver leading edge gives way to carbon-fibre weave, and gold detailing. The branding is tastefully accomplished. The face, well the face earned a few extra marks from me in my evaluation because in a time where black PVD faces reigns supreme, the TR20 has a silver face. Oh, simpler times!

Tying in just a little bit to the aesthetics of the TR20 440 is the Vizard shaft. The purplish colour of the shaft with the details of the screenprinting on the shaft make it a perfect combination adding to the rack appeal of this driver.

Innovation. The TR20 440 also scored a perfect 10/10 for innovation. Much of that had to do with the Non-Rotating Hosel featured. Golf shafts have spines which can affect consistency, distance, and dispersion. The fact that the design team at Honma Golf took this into account gave it a leg up on the competitors across the range at Demo Day. IF there’s one thing that I wish I could/would have done, it was to try this driver without the “made for” Vizard shaft and try it with a shaft that may have been a little bit more “inconsistent”. The hosel adjustment is easy as Up, Flat, Open and Closed are the options. The adjustability of the weights isn’t necessarily a new idea by any means, but the adjustability is there. Note: There is no spot for toe weighting.

The feel and acoustics of this driver is near perfect. In scoring, this facet of the evaluation scored a 9 out of 10. The Honma TR20 offers a muted carbon/metallic thwack that sounds authoritative through impact. I felt that the sound was gratifying while the feel off of the face at impact was like that of a “Mexican Jumping Bean on a triple espresso shot”. Which leads me in to the performance of this driver.

By the time I got around to swinging the TR20 440 from Honma the temperatures had dipped even more from earlier in the day. The wind was blowing right into my face and really, this was a both a blessing and a curse for Honma. Using the 9.5º head and 60-gram Vizard in Stiff flex I ws amazed with how straight this driver was. There wasn’t one golf ball that strayed off-line. Straight distance, a penetrating ballflight into a strong headwind. There’s a very good chance that this driver might have been the longest on the range for me that day as well. The TR20 440 blew my mind!

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The Finish

Even though he doesn’t play Honma Golf any longer, there is one thing that can’t be taken away from it. Justin Rose helped design this driver. The TR20 was such an impressive driver that when I departed Winter Garden, Florida that night, I thought that it had won the 2020 Teezy Award for the “Top Driver” Category. The bigger shock was that when I finished tabulating the scoring, it hadn’t won. I re-counted the score no less than 5x.

In case you’re wondering, it scored a total of 45/50 points or in terms of percentages and school grades, 90%. That’s an A! But, it just goes to show you how competitive the driver category is in 2020. Ultimately, the TR20 took home the Bronze Teezy Award in the “Top Driver” Category.

So you’re wondering where it lost points? From a Value/Price Point point of view it didn’t score as well seeing that it has a MSRP of $649.99 USD. But, there is a premium that you have to pay to receive premium components.

The TR20 has a lot going for it. Performance, innovation, and the best looks in its category. The TR20 from Honma Golf is a terrific offering.

For more information please visit Honma Golf.

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Until The Next Tee!!

#fightandgrind #seeuonthenexttee

 

 

CLEVELAND GOLF INTRODUCES TWO ADDITIONAL PUTTER LINES

HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA – Aug. 10, 2020 – Cleveland Golf® is proud to announce the new Huntington Beach SOFT Premier putters, to go along with an array of new Huntington Beach SOFT models. Discover a new, premium putting experience and the confidence to sink more putts with the new Huntington Beach SOFT Premier, officially launching on Friday, Aug. 21, 2020.

 

“The Huntington Beach SOFT Premier builds upon the success of our current putter lineup,” said Brian Schielke, Marketing Director at Cleveland Golf. “With new head shapes, sleek designs, and a fitting system for every stroke type, we have a putter that will help any golfer improve their performance on the greens.”

 

The foundation of the Huntington Beach SOFT Premier is Cleveland Golf’s proprietary Speed Optimized Face Technology (SOFT). SOFT solves the crucial putting issue of distance control. SOFT normalizes the speed of putts across the entire putter face.

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The center of the face features more condensed milling lines, while milling mark frequency decreases going outward from the center. Unlike similar technologies featured elsewhere, SOFT takes the next step by delivering model-specific milling for each model so we can deliver optimized distance control regardless of the putter shape.

What separates the Huntington Beach SOFT Premier is a new Gray Satin finish that provides a sleek, premium look and limits glare.

Huntington Beach SOFT Premier features two specific putter grips to achieve optimal putting performance for each stroke type. For slight or strong arcing strokes, the Lamkin SINKFIT Skinny Pistol grip, combined with a toe-down weighting, will help facilitate clubhead rotation. Meanwhile, the larger Lamkin SINKFIT Pistol grip and face-balanced design is ideal for straight back stroke types.

Key Innovations Inside Huntington Beach SOFT Premier:

  • Gray Satin Finish: Sleek, Gray Satin PVD finish delivers a premium appearance and instills a sense of confidence.
  • Speed Optimized Face Technology: Ensuring consistent speed control and distance performance, Cleveland’s proprietary Speed Optimized Face Technology normalizes ball speed across the entire face of the putter, even on off-center putts.
  • Putting Fit System: With two different grip options, the new Huntington Beach SOFT Premier offers a precise fit depending on your stroke type and model preference.
  • Precision Milled Face: A unique diamond CNC milling pattern increases friction for a pure roll and softer feel at impact.

 

Huntington Beach SOFT Premier No.4

Furthermore, Cleveland Golf is introducing eight new tour-proven shapes to the Huntington Beach SOFT collection. These new releases offer a similar fitting system. For slight or strong arc types, the Huntington Beach SOFT Pistol grip comes standard, while straight back stroke types will benefit from the Huntington Beach SOFT Oversized grip.

Huntington Beach SOFT Premier putters are available for $159.99 MAP, while the new models of Huntington Beach SOFT putters are available for $129.99 MAP. Personalization is available for both models featuring 16 unique color selections and four different color fill areas for an additional $10.